Hey! I’m Victoria. I’m the chef, photographer, and writer behind A Hint of Garlic. I spend my days raising my baby boy & creating recipes inspired by mama life & personal cravings. My passion for cooking is based on giving our favorite foods a healthier, organic twist & vowing never to give up Mexican food and french fries.
I was born in Plant City, FL – a tiny Southern town that prides itself on agriculture and it’s annual Strawberry Festival. I was raised on hot dogs, tuna with pickles, and loads of mac n’ cheese. Butter was a main food group and fish sticks were a staple. Needless to say, I wasn’t born with a love for kale and quinoa. But my Dad taught me how to cook at a young age, and together we learned how to throw ingredients together and come up with things that tasted good to us. God had clearly given me a passion for food, but my Dad is the one who taught me how to chase my dreams.
After high school, Anthony & I got married and moved 1,400 miles away to Ft. Bliss, TX. We spent 3 years of Army life in El Paso, where we ate ridiculous amounts of papas locas and pretended to be adults. That’s when I discovered the power of Netflix documentaries and a cool little health food place called Sprouts. I started reading every ingredient label before buying anything, did tons of personal research, and watched every documentary I could find on the food industry.
Our lives weren’t transformed overnight, but its amazing to see how different things are a few years later. We’ve been back in Florida for 3 years now, living in the lovely city of Lakeland. In April of 2015, I started my own organic meal delivery business. I loved building creative menus and cooking up delicious meals for the people in our area. But after a year and a half, I knew it wasn’t what I was supposed to be doing anymore. After a ton of prayer and questioning, I took a leap of faith and ended my meal service for good. The very next day, we found out we were pregnant! On June 14th, 2017, we welcomed our baby boy into this world. We are so in love with our little Leon James and I can’t wait for he and I to share a love for food!
Education is what sparked my interest in healthy food, and its what eventually pushed me to make transitions in our lifestyle. But changes like these are way more likely to stick if you combine that knowledge with positive encouragement and discovering what makes your body feel good. And thats why I decided to start this blog. My goal through my cooking and writing is to share my journey with you and to hear about yours. All of the recipes I share will be accompanied by bits of information that I’ve learned along the way – things that will hopefully help you feel more informed and in control of your health.
We aren’t vegetarian, or vegan, or paleo, or gluten-free. But you’ll find that a lot of the dishes I create fit into one of those categories. I believe in eating more vegetables and less sugar. I believe in trying new things often and making healthy food taste awesome. And I also believe that there are days when you have to cut yourself some slack & be proud that you didn’t eat a candy bar for dinner.
So sometimes we’ll eat fried green tomato BLTS and sometimes I’ll share a recipe for vegetarian burrito bowls with quinoa. Life is about balance and discovering how to make better choices without giving up all the things you love.
I’m so happy you stopped by. I can’t wait to share this journey with you!